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REVIEW: Yann Tiersen @ the Wonder Ballroom (Portland, OR – – 4/29/09)

30th Apr 09 (Thu) 7 comments

(that’s unnatural)

So, I was soooo stoked about seeing French musician Yann Tiersen for the first time.  His albums are quite delightful.  I, like many people in the States, first heard of him via the soundtrack/score to Amelie.  But then based on the Brooklyn Vegan (photo credit above) and photobear 2009 tour reviews, I got a little sad.  No accordion, very little violin, and Yann on guitar for most of the night!? Pardon my French, but… viens m’enculer!? Viens m’enculer!?

Well, I didn’t know how it would turn out; so I figured it’s still a rare occasion to see Yann in the U.S.  I already had the tickets, it was only 2 hours away… so… I gotta go.  No photos allowed at the venue.  Boo.

The opener, Skinni Dip yogurt (on Burnside – downtown), was awesome.  The opener (at the venue), Asobi Seksu, played far too long.  I’m having a bad streak of uninteresting / painful openers.  Sorry.  Just didn’t like them at all.

Yann Tiersen and his band came on around 9:45pm, and the first two solid songs were rock numbers that had very little resemblance of a Yann Tiersen song.  The 3rd song was finally one I recognized, but only vaguely as it was turned into some sort of messy, too fast rock blast.

No try on the set list… it’s too difficult to remember song names originating in a foreign language to mine.  Also, the set that we caught didn’t even seem to be a Yann Tiersen show.  I mean, I have 95% of his catalog (all but the latest Tabarly soundtrack)… and the songs were completely foreign to the crowd.  Had I wanted to go to a decent/mediocre rock band play a poorly mixed show, I would have gone to my local rock venue and paid $3 to see what was going on that night.  I went to see Yann Tiersen’s songs in a live setting.  Unfortunately, we really didn’t get that.  I mean, I’m all for artistic expression, and the artist doing what they feel is their artistic direction versus what the fans “want” – – but to some extent on a live tour, you’d expect to give the fans what they expect… again, at least to some extent.

Maybe this was his French way of pulling a prank on us stupid Americans.  It just makes you wonder.  Oh well… if he comes back, I’m not buying tickets until I read some reviews with more mention of accordion solos. :)

The Appropriate Linkage:

~Dan – np: CelldwellerSymbiont -EP- & then… O.S.I.Blood

To cleanse the palate… here’s what I was hoping for in a Yann Tiersen show…

(or)

(or, from Amelie)

Sigh. Maybe next time.

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Yann Tiersen, SXSW, Nellie McKay

17th Feb 09 (Tue) Leave a comment

Well… triple threat news again. This time it’s all about a touring Tiersen, a festival in Austin that every-indie-body loves, and my favorite Nellie (rhymes with McPie).  In order of recency…

OK… so 3 hours ago I found out that French musician Yann Tiersen was touring.  Touring the U.S.  Touring through Portland… holy crap.  For those who don’t know Yann Tiersen, click his name above or know that he makes great French music that got a lot more prominence with the Jean-Pierre Jeunet movie Amélie.  I never thought he’d play any semblance of a decent North American tour… Anyway, here are the tour dates:

Apr 15 – Maison Française WASHINGTON
Apr 16 – Irving Plaza NEW YORK
Apr 17 – Club Soda MONTREAL
Apr 18 – Club Soda MONTREAL
Apr 19 – Mod Club Theatre TORONTO
Apr 21 – Logan Theatre CHICAGO
Apr 22 – Triple Rock Social MINNEAPOLIS
Apr 24 – Blue Bird DENVER
Apr 25 – Urban Lounge SALT LAKE CITY
Apr 27 – Richards VANCOUVER
Apr 28 – Neumo’s SEATTLE
Apr 29 – Wonder Ballroom PORTLAND
May 1 – Great American SAN FRANCISCO
May 2 – El Rey LOS ANGELES
May 8 – Queens Hall EDINBURG
May 9 – ABC 1 GLASGOW
May 10 – Duchess YORK
May 11 – Academy II BIRMINGHAM
May 13 – Junction CAMBRIDGE
May 14 – Electric Ballroom LONDON
May 15 – ATP fest “The Breeders” MINEHEAD
May 17 – Pheonix EXETER
May 18 – Komedia BATH
May 19 – Concorde II BRIGHTON
Jul 4 – Centro de artes e do espectaculos FIGUEIRA DA FOZ
Jul 5 – Casa das artes VILA NOVA DE FAMALICAO
Jul 6 – Centro cultural de Belem LISBOA

I just got my tickets (the Portland show is available from TicketBastard).  I’m. so. excited.

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The SXSW music festival is a’going on again.  I don’t really have a desire (or time off during busy season) to go to it this year.  If I had time off in March, I’d be in San Francisco anyway.  This year’s SXSW schedule is out (http://www.sxsw.com/).

If I went, I’d totally check out Peter Mulvey (he’s awesome) on the Signature Sounds stage, and Fol Chen on the Asthmatic Kitty stage… OK, and maybe Tori Amos, but she’s far from indie (she’s got a new one coming out in the spring, titled Abnormally Attracted to Sin).

Oh, and I’d probably also check out Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head on whatever stage they’re playing at SXSW… as you can’t argue with a band name like that (though I will say I’ve never ever heard the band).  Hot!

 

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The live taping of Nellie McKay and Mia Doi Todd on Mountain Stage was recently posted.  It was taped March 2008 but recently posted on NPR.org on January 27, 2009.  Go here for the streaming link hook-upNellie played: Real Life, Long and Lazy River, Mother of Pearl, Testify, Buttons & Bows, and Zombie; and Mia Doi Todd played: River of Life and Esperar Es Caro.

~Dan – np: The RutlesArchaelogy

iRandom {28 Aug 08}

28th Aug 08 (Thu) Leave a comment

Some random listening this morning from the iPod’s shuffle option…

 

  1. Mogwai “Kappa” from Government Sessions

    This was fortuitous, as I’m going to see Mogwai in Portland next week.
    :) The Government Sessions was my first experience with Mogwai.
  2. John Scofield “Whatcha See is Whatcha Get” from Up All Night

    A little bit too hotel lobby jazz for me compared to some of J.Sco’s other stuff… but great for reading through employee benefit audit guidance.
  3. Frank Zappa “The Moon Will Never Be the Same” from Joe’s Xmasage

    More of the avant-garde meanderings from FZ. Short, but not sweet.
  4. Sigur Rós “Bíum Bíum Bambaló” from Angels of the Universe

    This is easily my favorite track from this soundtrack / score.
  5. Silverchair “No Association” from Freak Show

    Ah, from their good ol’ gah-rung-ah era…
  6. The Sheds “Rootwings” from You’ve Got a Light

    Cincinnati quirfolk duo… but one of their more straight forward songs… they haven’t put anything out lately, I don’t think. I may have to poke by their website when I get home tonight.  http://www.theshedsmusic.com/
  7. Tim Sparks “Where Are You My Lover?” from Tanz

    Gentle guitars on this overall beautiful Tzadik release.
  8. Frank Zappa “Flakes” from Beat the Boots #7: Saarbrücken

    Two FZ tunes in the 10-song spin… what are the odds? Well, actually, they are 1,110 available FZ songs out of 14,678 non-replacing permutations (all songs currently on my iPod) would be a 0.57% chance for 2 FZ to land somewhere in the first 10 spins (unless I did the math incorrectly – which is highly likely, as my stats book from last term was borrowed from a colleague). Anyway… fun song, complete with a pretty bad, but funny, Bob Dylan impression.
  9. Caedmon’s Call “I Just Don’t Want Coffee” from I Just Don’t Want Coffee -EP-

    This one has different lyrics from the Warner debut version. It’s one of the more compelling, and thankfully not Jebusy, Derek Webb-penned early Caedmon’s tunes. Derek Webb is a great songwriter. Even though I have philosophical differences with him, I still love him and his music.
  10. Yann Tiersen “Soir de fête” from Rue des Cascades

    Yann, you wiley devil. Great instrumentalism with the grounded feel of folk music, but the fun of a circus parade.

Well, I shant type robustly about the 11th and so on shuffled tune… even thought I want to (#11 was Estradasphere and #12 was Isis). Anyway, that’s just a peak inside my ears this morning… check any of them out on iTunes or the Amazon.

 

~Dan

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